What’s your “Mass schedule”? Do you attend every week? Daily? Just at Christmas and Easter? Whatever your habit is, with the Holidays coming, it is now time to think about Mass, which one to go to where to go and with whom. Or, in other words, how you “Keep the Christ in Christmas”! How about those who do not go to Mass anymore, or have never gone?
One thing I notice is that almost every person I talk to about going to Mass always says “I really should go more”. Something is stopping these folks from attending and it may be something very small. They might just need an invitation from you. Have your children or your spouse quit going to Mass? If you have tried to get them to go you have probably noticed that anger, coercion, begging and pleading to not work. However, God truly does hear our prayers and will answer them. St. Monica prayed for decades for the conversion of her husband and son. Her prayers were heard, and finally, her husband and son converted. Her son, Augustine, became a Saint and is a Doctor of the Church. Her example is one of profound faith in God. She never wavered in her prayers and never lost hope in the eventual conversion of her husband and son.
If you are a faithful participant in the Mass and have people around you who have stopped participating, perhaps a simple invitation to join you is all they need. For me, the struggle is when I’m told no, thank you. They do not wish to join me. Showing disappointment in their decision to not attend seems to make them more stubborn and their refusals last longer. So I simply tell them, Ok and I’ll see them later. And I start next week with another invitation.
If you are someone who has stopped attending Mass regularly, or come just at Christmas or Easter, please know that when you are invited, it is a twofold reason. One is that the person inviting you loves you and cares about you and would love to have your company at Mass. The other reason is that God is also inviting you, He loves you and cares about you and would like to see you. He loves you regardless of whether you go to Mass or not, but, just like the person inviting you, He would love to have your company.
So, this Christmas, as you are deciding what Mass to attend, maybe there is someone you know who is just waiting for an invitation to join you. Or if you are thinking that maybe you should attend Mass more often, know that you are always invited and welcome. You don’t even need to wait for someone to ask, just know that God is asking every day for some time with you. Why not spend some time with Him and see what happens?
Monica PittmanPosted on 4/02/20
Thank you for your comments! Please see the entry posted on April 2, 2020 for a listing of some ways to watch Mass while we cannot attend in person.
Phil ToomeyPosted on 4/02/20
In light of the virus situation, do you have a personal recommendation on a virtual Mass that I could watch on Sundays on my computer? I need a decent sermon to start a new week. By the way, I love your church and attend periodically. My wife and I have been parishioners at St John's for the past 30 years-after getting evicted from st Paul's Catholic Center. My wife doesn't want to change churches because she has some good friends there, and I normally attend with her. She is not in very good health, so I want to support her. But my heart is at St Mary's, and I even sent in a St Mary's registration form several months ago.